father Port Edward

A father has drowned and died while trying to save his son.
Image: Pixabay

Over 20 people die in various drowning incidents in Limpopo

A number of bodies have been retrieved in different drowning incidents in Limpopo rivers and dams since the rainy season started.

father Port Edward

A father has drowned and died while trying to save his son.
Image: Pixabay

The public has been urged to be wary of rivers and dams as drowning incidents are reported almost everyday in parts of Limpopo. 

This warning comes as over 20 people have drowned in rivers and dams across the province in less than two months.  

20 DROWN IN LIMPOPO IN TWO MONTHS 

According to the South African Police Service (SAPS) in Limpopo,  from the beginning of October 2022 to date, twenty incidents of Inquests resulting from drownings, with the number of victims counting more than the incidents.

Members of the South African Police Service Search and Rescue Team have their hands full, attending to numerous calls of drownings in all five Districts of the Province, reportedly.

Limpopo drownings
Search and Rescue Team responding to one of the drowning incidents. Image: SAPS.

The latest incidents involve the drownings of two school children at different locations in the policing precinct of Tubatse under Sekhukhune District.

A 12-year-old boy Thabiso Madire from Praktiseer outside Burgersfort drowned when he reportedly jumped into Tubatse river on 23 November 2022. His body was retrieved by members of the SAPS Search and Rescue Unit several kilometers from where he drowned.

On Saturday 26 November 2022, the same team managed to retrieve the body of an 18-year-old male, Gift Mitchel from the Olifants river under Tubatse policing precinct, at a distance of about 48 kilometers from the point where he was reportedly swimming with friends.

Another incident is said to have occurred at Vhulaudzi outside Makhado after police received a complaint of a drowning. 

Members of the Search and Rescue Team were dispatched to the scene and upon arrival they retrieved a decomposed body believed to be the one of an eleven year old girl who was reported missing.

Spokesperson, Brigadier Motlafela Mojapelo said the body was found without both hands and had the clothes matching the description of the missing girl. 

Mojapelo said investigations have already begun to determine conclusive identity on the deceased and the circumstances of her demise.

“Several pastors and congregants have also drowned performing religious baptism in rivers, streams and dams at different locations in Limpopo,” Mojapelo said. 

Limpopo Police Commissioner, Lieutenant General Thembi Hadebe has called on communities to be wary of rivers and dams as persistent rains have probably raised dam levels and rivers might be flooding.

“Our members attached to the Search and Rescue Unit are currently stretched to the limit as reports of drownings are received almost every day,” she said.

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